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Build a life-size monument of Robocop in Detroit! Part man, part machine, all crowd funded!
Build a life-size monument of Robocop in Detroit! Part man, part machine, all crowd funded!
2,718 backers pledged $67,436 to help bring this project to life.

Happy New Year 2017 Update from Venus Bronze Works

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Hello RoboCop Statue Backers and Fans! 

We’ve been getting many inquires lately as to the status of the statue, and rightly so! So we’ve asked Venus Bronze Works to take you behind the bronze curtain, deep in Old Detroit, to share with you the status as of right now. Check out this report with pictures from Venus, the small but very talented crew of Detroit craftsmen who are deep into the process of assembling the fully poured statue. 

It’s been a long but exciting process for us; from Imagination Station deciding to go for it, to your support as RoboBackers, to the amazing guidance and partnership with Omni Consumer Products, to Fred Barton's expert custom sculpting, to Across The Board Creation's 3D scanning, digital enlarging, physical fabrication, and finally to Venus Bronze Works for casting and manufacturing in bronze. 

As we leave the completion in Venus Bronze Works capable hands, look out for our next update, when we’ll finally be able to share where you can visit the RoboCop Statue while he watches over Delta City! 

RoboCop Statue status as of 2-10-2017 from Venus Bronze Works:

With The Sculpture’s assembly from the ground up already in progress, the final major molds of the RoboCop statue were completed and poured in mid October of 2016.  

 

 

As parts are removed from the molds, they must have all sprue’s and vents cut off. From there all surfaces are ground and rough sanded for inspection before assembly can begin.

 

As parts are prepared for assembly they are inspected and marked inch by inch for any surface flaws, pits or sand inclusions that will need to be filled before and during the assembly process.

 

 

All areas to be joined are prepared by grinding a bevel on the matching edges to accept a “full weld” often done in layers, making the pieces a uniformly solid mass from inside to out.

All joints are then welded (again often in layers) to build up material as needed, as some areas are thicker than others due to the thickness changes of the Sculpture’s details, in some cases the pieces are welded from both the outside and the inside.

Starting hands first, the fingers are attached. Hands and wrists are joined. The rest of the arm parts will wait in pieces for assembly later when they can be attached to the torso, from the shoulder down to the hands. This process is easier than assembling the whole arm now and having to crane it into position.

 

 

As the legs assembly begins from foot upwards, assembly of the torso is also underway. This is the most tedious of the assembly as there are upwards of a dozen parts needing to fit together in this 3 dimensional puzzle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The strategy in assembly is planned with careful choices to make it a safe and efficient process. Legs from foot, to ankle, calf, knee and thigh, then hip, repeat. Comparing to images documented before the model was cut into these pieces, all angles are matched for alignment. Once the legs are assembled up to the hip, materials have to be hand formed to create the joint between hip and pelvis, again measuring and matching to the original images.

 

At the point when the pelvis is ready to be attached, decisions on the stainless mounting armature are being considered.

 

As this is happening the assembly on the torso continue.

Throughout the process, as joints are created and welded, the process of “cleaning up” welds through grinding, sanding and chasing take place. Easier to do this through out the process (when pieces can be moved and rolled) rather than when the Sculpture is a whole.

At this point the Sculpture is well past being 50% complete in its assembly. When the display base type and style has been determined the stainless armature will be installed to match the needed specifications. From there the torso will be able to be placed on the pelvis and with some more custom fit shoulder joint parts the arms will descend and this big guys hands will reach out to their final destination. From there RoboCop will get his head.

 

Guest Update with New Pics, Studio Visit, and Love Connection

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About a month ago, a friend and great photographer (as you will see) contacted us with a favor. Seems that after her transplant from Detroit to Texas she found big love in the big state, and our little RoboCop Statue played a small role! The story, which will one day be legend no doubt, goes that on their first date (you know, when you tell your life stories and try not to do something too dumb) the statue came up in conversation. He is a huge Robo fan and backer! She recognized his refined taste and decided that he's a keeper, so when they were planning to come to Detroit for a visit she devised a secret plan of her own to surprise him with a visit to Venus Bronze Works. How could we say no to that! Plus they are sharing the love with us! Here's Taylor's update with Elisabeth's pictures!

A RoboBacker in Old Detroit

Like the rest of you, I’ve been eagerly awaiting the latest Robo news, and through a serious of fortunate events, I found myself face to face with Robocop’s large bronze visage on my very first trip to Detroit.

Serve the public trust; Protect the innocent; Uphold the law; [Classified]
Serve the public trust; Protect the innocent; Uphold the law; [Classified]

10 Feet Tall and Bulletproof

The last time Team Robo checked in, the molds had been prepared and were at Venus Bronze Works in the capable hands of artisan Giorgio Gikas, who is in the final stages of crafting many dollars’ worth of bronze bricks into a Robocop that will weight 2500 pounds and stand 10 feet tall—13 once on his pedestal.

Hundreds of pounds of raw bronze
Hundreds of pounds of raw bronze
A modest Giorgio
A modest Giorgio

Touring the studio helped me understand just how large of an undertaking building the statue has been. Giorgio put in a furnace solely to melt the statue’s bronze, which is then poured by hand into each form. And after a tremendous amount of work—pro-bono, no less—almost every section of Robocop has been cast, ready to be assembled.

Bronze furnace
Bronze furnace
Ready for duty
Ready for duty

I left the studio knowing that the project remains in good hands, and Robo is nearing the final stages of completion. I’m excited… are you? Go get ‘em.

Trunk mold in preparation
Trunk mold in preparation
Dead or alive, you’re coming with me
Dead or alive, you’re coming with me
Supportive footwear
Supportive footwear
After and before
After and before
OCP runs the cops
OCP runs the cops
Look at the size
Look at the size

My what a big bronze head you have

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Hi all! Here are the latest pictures we've received from Venus Bronze Works showing the fully cast bronze head and some other Robo features. We're excited to see the progress and have been told they're closing in on completion. Of course, we're in the same position you are, waiting for the work to be done. The good news is production clearly continues. We'll keep you updated when we get another update from Venus.

Thank you again for your companionship on this loooong road to a giant statue.

Hello, Giorgio! Checking In With Venus Bronze Works (Video)

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Robobackers! Last weekend MLive paid a visit to Giorgio Gikas at Venus Bronze Works on Detroit's east side to check in with his progress on Robo and to shoot some video and pics. 

The whole piece is a nice update while we all patiently wait for Giorgio to finish his hands-on, slow-roasted process. He reports that 80% of the molds are now done and that the 10' tall, 3,000 lb bronze statue will be complete by spring. Check it out here:

http://www.mlive.com/entertainment/detroit/index.ssf/2014/12/detroits_robocop_statue_photos.html

Thank you again for your support throughout the marathon. You just have to smile at the time it takes, knowing the final mold, pour, and assembly is being done at the right place: the last bronze shop in Detroit, in all its old school glory, with an accomplished local artist like Giorgio. It means a lot to everyone involved, and Giorgio and all the amazing craftspeople who are making it real send their regards.

Our very best from Detroit and the Internet,

Team Robo & Friends

Quick Clarification: Statue Coming Later This Year, NOT Today

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You may have heard in the news today that the RoboCop statue was being unveiled in Detroit today. This was news to us! And not true news.

To be clear: the RoboCop statue is still on track to be finished later this year, and is still in the hands of Giorgio Gikas at Venus Bronze Works in Detroit, but news reports about it being unveiled today are incorrect.

Perhaps the miscommunication grew from the misreporting of an MGM promotion for the new RoboCop DVD where a person in a RoboCop outfit is walking around Detroit and throwing out the first pitch at the Tigers game tonight.

All official updates will come through this page.

Thank you for your cooperation, and Go Tigers!

Team Robo